WRITING WEDNESDAY: The Writer’s Holiday Wish List

After reading Ava Jae’s lovely holiday book recommendation list over on Writability (and putting a significant dent in my credit card buying most of them), I thought it would be fun to do the same! But, since most of the books I read this year have titles likeΒ Dubin’s Rapid Interpretation of ECGs or Principles and Practices of Infectious Diseases, I’ve had to branch out a little from only books. Instead, I’ve created a sort of holiday wish list for writers — awesome gifts that you can get your favourite writer friend πŸ™‚

1. “WRITER” Bookends! So adorable, from Knob Creek Metal Arts.

2. Writing posters These are hundreds of these out there, but I especially love the one on the left, for some reason… πŸ˜‰

3. Writing Dishware! Okay, I know that people probably won’t buy/use this. But it’s so adorable, I had to include it.

4. Moleskine Notebooks Does anyone else just sort of collect Moleskine notebooks, even though they do all their writing on a computer? No? Just me? Mmk.

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5. THIS T-SHIRT! Hahahah okay I know it’s kind of ugly, but come on. It’s hilarious.

6. Books! (duh) Here are just a few of my favorites.

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A light, fun read with a quirky male protagonist.

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An all-time fave!

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Everything Shane Koyczan does is AMAZING ❀

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A great read for the holidays, if you have several work-free days to fill πŸ™‚

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I know everyone in the universe has already read this… but I hadn’t until last week, and it’s fantastic.

Hushed by Kelley York – a NA LGTB thriller. So creepy and awesome!!!

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THE SUNDAY REVIEW: The Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black

4/5

Screen Shot 2014-12-06 at 10.00.45 PMSo, I realize I’m a little late to this party. I’ve heard people talking about this book for quite some time, but I only just got around to reading it this week, on a flight back from DC (shout out to my weird seatmate who alternated between blatantly reading over my shoulder and elbowing me in the side as he enthusiastically played Candy Crush).

And honestly, after reading it, I’m torn. About 95% of me absolutely loved it — it was so original and clever, and the main character, Tana, was fantastic. I was SO close to giving this 5/5 stars, but unfortunately, the 5% I didn’t like kept nagging at my brain.

For one thing, I think it should have been written in first person. I hate saying that, because I’m bored to tears with all the first person YA, but in this book, I think it would have worked brilliantly. To me, it actually felt like it might have been written in first person originally, then changed. There were also a couple of awkward moments where it jumped from third-person close to third-person omniscient.

Another thing that bothered me were the quotes at the beginning of each chapter. I just found them a little bit too showy, like they were trying too hard to be meaningful — but that’s completely a personal thing.

And last but not least, there was Tana’s little sister, Pearl. I feel like this is a under-recognized YA cliche — the little sister who we (the readers) are supposed to love, simply by virtue of the fact the main character loves her. Like The Hunger Games‘ Prim — do we ever see any evidence that Prim is worth all the trouble Katniss goes through? I don’t think so. And in The Coldest Girl in Coldtown, I really liked the main character, Tana, but her little sister Pearl annoyed me to no end. I skimmed impatiently through each of her (mercifully short) chapters. But I’m a huge cynic, so this one’s probably on me πŸ˜‰

Anyway — at the end of the day, this is all super nit-pitcky stuff, and should in no way deter you from reading this fantastic book. The writing is brilliant, the characters are vivid and unique, and the romance is awesome. An easy 4/5 — and the closest I’ve come to giving something 5/5 in quite some time.

Read and enjoy!

xo Elizabeth